24 Hours of Solo

On a bit of a whim I decided to have a go at the current 24 hour game design contest over the weekend. I knew that I had other things to do, but I managed to plan things so that I could allocate a few hours here and there to work on my project. A big part of the 24 hour contests is figuring out what you will be able to achieve in the available time, so while I wouldn't be able to achieve as much as I might normally, I should at least be able to get something done, which is pretty much the objective of the exercise.

This month's contest requirement was "solo", which of course has a lot of folks (myself included) thinking of solitaire games, but on reflection I started thinking about things like solo round the world flights, the classic card game Solo Whist (I used to play that with my grandparents as a teenager), and of course, Han Solo.  By the time I got to starting I was thinking about guitar solos, so that ended up being the core of my theme.  Remember that, in the 24 hour challenges, the requirement can be interpreted however you like, as long as your game incorporates the word or phrase in some way.

Possibly not the most compelling image of a game you're ever going to see.

What I ended up with was a game where you collect cards representing sections of a song (verse, chorus, etc.) and lay them out into a tableau representing your song, with each card restricting your options for the next.  After everyone has created their song, each gets scored according to various set collecting criteria which are randomly selected, some of them at the start of the game and some at the end.  I repurposed (or reinterpreted) a mechanism that I rather like from Doctor Who The Card Game ('Only be sure always to call it please, "research"'), where you pass your unused cards after taking your turn to the player on your right. In this case, you have a hand of six cards, of which you play two, keep two, pass two, then draw two and wait to be passed two.  I'm actually quite pleased with that. 

This game has had only very light testing at this point, and basically works, though needs a lot of work if it is to become a solid game. I also decided (as you can see from the picture above) to not bother with finding artwork to put on the cards; a search of free or CC images online would go a long way to making the game look a lot nicer.

If you are interested, then here is the contest entry, which has links to download the rules and print and play card file.

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